Should Jermichael Finley’s Chemistry Comments Cause Concern?

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Jermichael Finley - Packers vs. Giants playoffs.
How big of an issue is chemistry for Finley?

One of the biggest disappointments during the 2011 season for the Green Bay Packers was the overall play of Jermichael Finley.  Even though he is coming off the best statistical season of his career (55 receptions, 767 yards and eight touchdowns), he was still expected to do much better.

On Wednesday, Jason Wilde of ESPNMilwaukee.com reported on what Finley said following practice.  One thing that instantly caught my attention is when Finley states,

 “I would say no offseason program. I couldn’t get the chemistry with the QB.”

This is a revealing comment because chemistry is arguably the most important thing between a quarterback and his receiver.  If the two aren’t on the same page, it’s unlikely that positive events will take place.

So, is this comment from Finley regarding his chemistry with Aaron Rodgers something to be concerned about?

Best-Case Scenario

The best case scenario is that Finley and Rodgers find their chemistry with a full offseason together and Finley puts up numbers similar to Jimmy Graham of the New Orleans Saints or Rob Gronkowski of the New England Patriots.  Finley absolutely has the potential to become a truly special player in this league, but he has yet to fully tap into that potential.

If the reason for that has been chemistry, and that gets fixed, the sky is really the limit for him as a player.  With his ability to create mismatches on all levels of the field, Finley could instantly become the best tight end in the league.

When you consider that Finley had what many teams would consider a successful year lacking chemistry with his quarterback, it’s scary to think what he might do if chemistry between him and Rodgers starts to formulate.  Of course, chemistry has nothing to do with hands, but I’m assuming that Finley will also become more focused on the game in this best-case scenario.

Worst-Case Scenario

This is going to be a little scary.

The worst-case scenario for Finley is that there simply isn’t any chemistry between him and Rodgers and what we’ve seen for the past three years is exactly what we’ll get as far as production goes.  Is that something to be upset about?

It would be quite disheartening to know that a player with so much potential can’t fully tap into it, but considering that Green Bay already has the best offense in the NFL, anything above what Finley produced in 2011 would be an added bonus.  While the short-term effects wouldn’t be too harmful to Green Bay, the long-term situation is what is more concerning.

Obviously if Finley doesn’t produce like the Packers expect him to they won’t re-sign him after the 2014 season.  My guess is that there are probably 31 other teams in the NFL that would love the opportunity to get a player like Finley on their roster.

So, let’s say that Finley goes to another team and finds the right chemistry with that quarterback.  He becomes the best tight end in the league, tears apart every defense that he faces and becomes the Packers’ worst nightmare.

Since we’re talking about the worst-case scenario, I forgot to mention that he signs with a team in the NFC North.

 

Likely Outcome

The likely outcome is that Finley falls in-between these two scenarios, with a lean more towards the best-case scenario.  If chemistry was truly the problem of last year, I don’t see any reason why Rodgers and Finley can’t fix that.  Neither player is known as being selfish of too much of a man to improve their game.

Finley is simply too talented and too much of a weapon to not continue to improve.  Look for him to establish himself as one of the two or three best tight ends in the NFL after a full offseason of chemistry lessons, making the Packers an even scarier team offensively.

  • Tarynfor12

    All the talk of chemistry is merely the cover-up for drops of balls that hit you in the hands.Failing under pressure to catch the 1st down pass needed that a 6 year old would catch.Drops has nothing to do with chemistry between two people just the one and his own hands.
    Should we accept drops from all WARs and YEs,yes,to a limit of those so recognizably easy and never should be drops.Replay,slow-mo gives both the players and fans equal ability to recognize those that would be applauded if caught and not so much booed if aren’t.
    However,the vast majority of Finley’s drops and their times of occurrence and level of difficulty has nothing to do with or the lack of chemistry between him and the QB.
    On another note of your article as to Finley leaving GB and possibly being a nightmare in the future against us,scaring oneself into keeping someone is more a nightmare if he isn’t what you kept him for…this is along the lines but more than the Driver retaining of scaring oneself to thinking,if he isn’t here,who will catch the ball in the playoffs for us.
    Thus,again ignoring that neither are or were instrumental in getting there in the first place.
    SB was without Finley and last year Driver was simply,on the team.

  • FireMMNow

    In my opinion Finley problem was not chemistry it was his inability to seperate from safeties and LBs. Hopefully a full year and a half removed from knee surgery he will have the explosive element back to his game. Last year he was a plodding TE, not a gamechanger like the Graham’s and New England duo. Catchers are tougher to make when you have defenders in your face. Get a little more seperation and things will come easier.

  • Ron LC

    Anyone who is a Packerfans knows by now that whatever Finley comments on should be ignored. Finley has an unchangable propensity to “open mouth and rapidly insert foot.” He undobtedly was trying to say having the extra time with AR will help them get off to a better start.

    No reporter worth their salt would quote Fiunley before an exhausting interpretation of what he says. In short, no issue here.

    • PackersRS

      Agreed. Finley is a diva, that won’t change.

      He is in every practice, he doesn’t get involved in off the field troubles, he is a good teammate, and to top it all, short of Rodgers and maybe Saturday, nobody in the offense has more responsibilities than Finley.

      He is used far wide, in the slot, as a TE and as an H-back. Not to mention that nobody goes in motion more than Finley. And he didn’t miss assignments last year.

      Quite clearly, if he starts runnning wrong routes, he’s not gonna get the ball, and he’s not gonna see the field.

      I don’t see the issue. Just Finley being Finley, venting to the press. If he feels he needs to do it for psychological reasons, so be it.

      • GForce12thMan

        He missed assignments and blew routes last year more than once. Re-watch the the playoff game against the Giants again, for one instance.

    • GForce12thMan

      It is easy to blow it off, but it can start affecting the players around him, then it may be too late to blow off. He needs to be put in check and told to shut up. He represents the Green Bay Packer organization and they do reserve that right.

  • Tom Tucker

    Finley simply needs to shut his mouth and let his play on the field speak for itself. I am tired of reading about his “potential”. It is time to live up to the hype Jermichael. Will it FINALLY be the “Year of the Take Over” as Jermichael has touted in the past, or will it be the year of another let down?

    • cow42

      No.
      He is what he is.

      We’ll look back and think – “yeah, he was good but… never as good as we thought he would/could/should be”.

      personally, i want his stats to stay average/above average. if he blows up the Pack won’t be able to afford him.

  • Mojo

    First a comment about “Cleat Lady”. In her defense the snot-nosed kid was wearing a Jennings jersey. Yes Jennings, the guy who replaced DD as the Packers Alpha-receiver. She was just expressing her loyalty to DD and took decisive action, not waiting for the other shoe to drop.

    About Finley. The thing that scares me the most is his intention to go “free-styling” I believe his QB is very finicky about route running. If you recall in the Giants PO game last year ARod missed a wide open Finley, in part because Finley short changed the route(although ARod should have thrown it right at him anyway).

    As far as Finley’s comments, I don’t see anything wrong with them. But chemistry or no chemistry, Finley has to hang on to catchable balls or QB1 is likely to look elsewhere.

    • GForce12thMan

      It is not Rodgers job to hit Finley when he “short changes” a route. #12 has enough things to do and worry about just because Finley hasnt learned the playbook and is not a good route runner. If Finley put the time he spends running his mouth into the playbook and hand drills he would be ok.

  • Big T

    If the man could catch a football I would overlook his ignorance when he opens his mouth. He is basically a poor mans Randy Moss who can’t catch the ball. He is your typical showboat negro that can’t back anything up. Doesn’t belong on the highly esteemed Green Bay Packers… Oakland would be a good fit!

    • dan

      wow. it’s embarrassing that my love for this game associates me with ignorant racists.

    • PackersRS

      Here’s to hoping that one of your progeny falls in love with an african descendant, and that they live a very happy life with lots of children of their own.

      • Tarynfor12

        Big T is a dolt and has shown himself,however,your reply and I hope it doesn’t,can open a can of worms in the topic of inter-racial partnering that doesn’t belong here either.
        Lets keep it football and relationships and any indifferences…mute.
        With all respect.

        • PackersRS

          The forementioned can of worms was opened when Big T ran his mouth, and now with your response. All I wished for was that his bigotry would not be passed to his descendents, dying with him.

          The “topic” of inter-racial partnering is not separated from racism.

          You can’t “half-accept” a race, you can’t accept a race “within conditions”. Doesn’t work that way.

          • Big T

            Some people just sit around waiting to misconstrue everything they see… Since when is negro a racist word. You are a sick twisted individual. It just so happens that I am blacker than the ace of spades, so you can crawl back into obammys bunghole and hide….

            • PackersRS

              Yes, I misconstrued “your typical negro showboat”… And the mention of Obama to me doesn’t make a difference, since I’m not from the U.S. nor care about your politics.

              The race of the perpetrator of a racial slur doesn’t matter. Using a racial slur to difamate a race is still racism. You can’t even use the argument of joke.

              I repeat what Dan said. It’s an embarassment to be associated with individuals like you, even remotely.

              • Big T

                you should stick to your country sports and leave the good ole USA alone you double standard piece of buffalo dung

  • John Zoul

    Unfortunately, he is emotionally about a sixteen year old…What you see (to use a metaphor) is what you get…Too many drops in crucial situations…mediocre blocker…most overrated player on the team and in the entire NFL North…

  • I bleed green more

    How much chemistry would there have been if Finley caught the ball more. It was simple to see he needed more stickem on his gloves and all the chemistry in the world would have developed.

  • Oppy

    “Should Jermichael Finley’s Chemistry Comments Cause Concern?””

    No.

  • Michael

    12 years ago my daughter was mugged n raped by 3 individuals, she is of european descent, like me. Turns out 3 us black kids were caught n admitted to it. I felt so distressed, never wanted to deal with a black person again. Then 5 years ago i worked with a black us girl. i was very hesitant to talk personally with her, but she just kept asking me how i was, we should have a bbq or something. Now 3 years has been the bliss of my life ! Now i believe it is all about the family for the most part ! sure on either end there will be bad n good, but love n family, no matter where, how when, what color your skin is, that is where good is ingrained !! it is parents, whether biological, adopted, foster, older siblings… i now it ain’t Brady Bunch any more,, but we can make a difference !!!

  • http://yardbarker.com nick perry

    He really just needs to shut his mouth and work on catching the ball. Every time I turn my laptop on I’m reading about this guy. The recent comments about Gronk and Graham are perfect examples why Finley needs a muzzle! Perhaps if he was able to put together a season like either one of those guys had last year, the Packers may have advanced. Instead we saw another game of ole 88 looking at his hands each time he dropped another pass as though they had holes in them. Just shut up and play! I really hope they give D.J. Williams a hard look this year! I think he has a chance to be great! Hopefully, without all the lip service!

  • GForce12thMan

    Chemistry has nothing to do with the ball hitting Finleys hands and then falling to the ground. This is a kid with a big ego that cant man up and take fault for anything and is always running at the mouth. He is built like a freak, has talent and a ton of potential, but an ego is a usually something that you cant coach, or help. I would cut him if I didnt see better production and attitude after this season, because an ego is not a good thing to have in a locker room. Especially a sound foundaion like The Packers run.